State finals begin with Cheerleading

The annual winter of championships begins is weekly crusade Saturday
Feb. 7, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
Girls from South Medford accept the 6A small trophy at the OE Invitational Saturday in Salem.
Photo by Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

They begin with the most exacting performances available and continues four more weekends through the loudest performances available in order to crown champions in four sports beginning Saturday with the state Cheerleading championships at Memorial Coliseum.

The field includes 75 schools separated into seven divisions, four of which have 12 or more schools represented. Competition begins at 9 a.m. for the morning session that involves smaller schools, and an afternoon session that features larger schools and coed teams.

Cheerleading is the first of four state championships for sports sanctioned by the Oregon School Activities Association.

The state championships for swimming will be held Feb. 15-16 at Mt. Hood Community College, the state wrestling championships will be conducted at Memorial Coliseum Feb. 22-23, and two weeks of state basketball tournaments will overtake high school, college and community gyms the following two weekends, ending with the Class 6A boys and girls title games at the Rose Garden, March 9.

Jesuit has won the last four Class 6A boys basketball titles, although Springfield has the longest running string of titles with its coed cheerleading team with seven. The Millers, though, will compete in the Class 5A small division Saturday, taking part in one of the most drama-filled divisions. Wilson, last year's defending champion, returns, as does West Albany, which won the division two years ago.

South Medford is the defending Class 6A girls champion, having gone unbeaten last year.